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How to Turn around a Failing Small Business

How to Turn around a Failing Small Business

Virtually every small business will go through up and down periods, but if your company has been failing for quite a while, you need to be proactive in turning it around if you want your business to survive. Thankfully, there are various techniques you can use to get your small business back on its feet.

Get Customer Feedback

If your small business isn’t working, one of the first things you should do is get feedback about your products or services and your company as a whole from your customers. Without carefully examining customer feedback, you won’t know in which areas you are failing and where you need to make improvements. Make gaining customer feedback a regular part of your business strategy so that you’re always aware of issues and failings from the end user’s perspective.

Consider a Personal Loan — Use Pay Stubs to Prove Your Income

At the heart of any failing business is financial problems. So, sometimes, the easiest and quickest way to turn around an underperforming company is to invest more money into it by getting a loan. You need to have a plan of how you will use that money, though, otherwise you’re shooting yourself in the foot. You could use the loan to purchase new equipment to increase your productivity or you could use the funds for marketing purposes. The only trouble is, during times of financial distress, it can be more difficult to qualify for a business loan.

Thankfully, you still have options such as taking out a personal loan or going with a lender who is sympathetic to businesses that need financial help to move forward. Make sure you have all the necessary documentation a lender will want to see before you apply for a loan. That includes providing documents that prove your income. You can use an online paystub creator to quickly produce evidence for proving income when you need them.

Increase Your Sales Efforts Tenfold

Quite simply, the more time your small business spends upping its sales efforts, the more sales you will make. That may sound easier said than done. But one of the best ways of tackling your sales efforts when you’re not generating enough sales is to up your efforts tenfold over a designated period of time. For instance, over one or two weeks, change your ten daily cold calls to one hundred daily calls. By putting in the extra motivation to increase leads and sales over a short period, you can really push up your sales. Combine the tenfold method with things like up-selling and cross-selling techniques and polishing your customer service, and you should be able to turn around your business quickly. Put in extraordinary effort, and you will achieve extraordinary results.

Use the SWOT Analysis Method to Identify Your Business Strengths and Weakness and Make Changes More Easily

Your sales strategy is just one part of your business, so you need to look carefully at each key element of your business operations to find out what areas are working and which aren’t. You need to examine both the internal and external areas of your small business. One of the best ways of doing that is to use the so-called SWOT analysis method, which goes like this:

  •   Strengths. Identify your business’s strengths so you can build upon the model.
  •   Weaknesses. By identifying your small business’s weaknesses, you can discover areas that aren’t working and make immediate changes.
  •   Opportunities. Look at external factors that represent good future prospects and capitalize on those ventures.
  •   Threats. By looking at adverse external factors that pose a threat to your small business, such as your competitors, you can determine which areas of your small business are being affected and then set goals to make improvements to your operations.

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by Dirk DeBie // Contributor to Businessing Magazine.

Opinions expressed by contributors are their own.